Lotus is in "full-rebuild" mode, as it continues to roll out updated and new models. Recently we saw the awesomeness that is the 2016 Lotus Evora 400, then the new 2016 Lotus 3-Eleven, and more recently we got a look at a new special-edition version of the Exige.

Dubbed the Exige 360 Cup, this model takes what Lotus began with the 2013 Lotus Exige V6 Cup and pushes it further, with some visual updates and a mild power boost.

So, have I officially given up my cheeky pokes at Lotus now that the brand is starting to show signs of life under its new management?

Continue reading my full review of the Lotus Exige 360 Cup to find out.

  • 2016 Lotus Exige 360 Cup
  • Year:
    2016
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    V6
  • Transmission:
    Six-Speed Manual
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    355 @ 7000
  • MPG(Cty):
    20
  • MPG(Hwy):
    37
  • Torque @ RPM:
    295 @ 4500
  • Displacement:
    3.5 L
  • 0-60 time:
    3.7 sec. (Est.)
  • Top Speed:
    170 mph
  • Price:
    62995
  • car segment:
  • body style:

Exterior

2016 Lotus Exige 360 Cup
- image 640412
2016 Lotus Exige 360 Cup Wallpaper quality
- image 640414
2016 Lotus Exige 360 Cup Wallpaper quality
- image 640418

At first glance, the Exige 360 Cup looks like the standard Exige V6 Cup. Upon further examination, however, the differences are there. Up front, the 360 Cup features a revised matte-black hood with twin nostrils, while Motorsport Red highlights appear on the front splitter and the front of the hood.

Around the sides, the Motorsport Red wheels are a dead giveaway, but there is also a subtle red line on the top of the air intakes that breaks things up a bit.

From the rear, the changes are even more obvious, as this angle shows off a “360 Cup” badge, a louvered engine cover, red spoiler uprights, a red accent on the top of the diffuser, and dual-exit, center-mounted exhaust tips.

While its changes are pretty minor, the Easter eggs here and there are a nice way to set this special model off from the standard V6 Cup.

Interior

2016 Lotus Exige 360 Cup
- image 640413

The Exige 360 Cup’s cabin has a few updates, but nothing even close to the exterior. The main updates include “360 Cup” embroidered SuedeTex seats and dashboard, and a numbered build plate. There are, however, a few options that can help spruce things up a bit. These options include a red Alcantara interior, a fire extinguisher, air-conditioning, four-point harnesses and a removable steering wheel.

Sure, the Exige Cup 360’s interior is pretty Plain Jane, but it is a track-focused sports car, so you should expect that.

Drivetrain

Under the louvered engine cover of the Exige 360 Cup is the same 3.5-liter supercharged V-6 that powers the standard V6 Cup, but Lotus pushed it to 360 PS (355 horsepower) – a 10 PS boost. Lotus milked these extra ponies from the Toyota-sourced V-6 by freeing up the flow in its intake and exhaust systems.

Though it has slightly more power, its performance credentials remain unchanged at just under 3.8 seconds to 60 mph and a top speed of 170 mph.

Like the V6 Cup this model is based upon, the 360 Cup has an aluminum chassis, double-wishbone suspension and two-way adjustable suspension for precision handling. It also has four dynamic modes: drive, sport, race, and off. It also features launch control for off-the-line acceleration.

For added prowess in the twisties, there are optional Ohlins TTX two-way adjustable dampers.

This special model also packs the V6 Cup’s aero kit, which adds 43 pounds of downforce at 100 mph. Not too bad for a car the weighs just 1,130 kg (2,491 pounds).

Prices

2016 Lotus Exige 360 Cup
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The Exige 360 Cup rings in at £62,995 ($98,758 as of 2015) including VAT. Oddly enough, this is the exact same price as the V6 Cup. If you are looking to pick up this racing rig, you’d better act fast, as Lotus will offer just 50 examples.

Competition

Porsche Cayman GT4

2016 Porsche Cayman GT4 High Resolution Exterior
- image 615247

Truth is that the Exige 360 Cup isn’t one for competition unless it is from its own kind. Hypothetically speaking, however, the 2016 Porsche Cayman GT4 could give the Exige a run for its money.

Thanks to a 911-sourced 3.8-liter flat-six, the Cayman has 385 horsepower to play around with. This is enough to get the mid-engine coupe to 60 mph in just 4.2 seconds and up to a terminal velocity of 183 mph.

On top of being fast, the Cayman GT4 is also a precision handler and rings in at £64,451 ($101,014 as of 2015) in the U.K. This puts it about in line with the Exige, save for the limited to 50 units thing.

Read our full review of the 2016 Porsche Cayman GT4 here.

Alfa Romeo 4C Quadrifoglio Verde

2016 Alfa Romeo 4C Quadrifoglio Verde Exclusive Renderings
- image 554119

Though not official yet, most of us motorheads are pretty certain Alfa will roll out a 2016 Alfa Romeo Quadrifoglio Verde 4C Coupe. Again, this will not be a true competitor to the 360 Cup, but it could be an alternative for someone looking for a friendlier commute every day.

It’ll likely feature a more powerful version of the already high-strung 1.75-liter four-cylinder engine. In the base 4C, this four-pot spits out 240 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, so something in the 260-pony and 275-pound-feet range would seem appropriate for the QV model.

This added power would help drop the 0-to-60 time to the low-four-second range, giving the Exige a reason to peek over its shoulder now and again.

Read our full review of the 2016 Alfa Romeo Quadrifoglio Verde 4C here.

Conclusion

2016 Lotus Exige 360 Cup
- image 640420

Readers gave me a ton of crap for piling on Lotus when it was under the misguided direction of Dany Bahar, and I always said that I would quickly fall back in love with the brand with the right management in place. Now that Jean-Marc Gales is in place and running the company the way it needs to be run, I am back to my Lotus love affair. Adding to my love are models like the Evora 400 and this little slice of Exige awesomeness. Too bad we’ll never see it here in the States.

  • Leave it
    • * Likely tough to find
    • * Lotus is still not 100 percent fixed
    • * Very spartan cabin leaves a lot to be desired

Press Release

Lotus Motorsport redefines the Exige V6 Cup with the introduction of the Exige 360 Cup. New lightweight panels and an increase in power mean the Lotus Motorsport Cup model continues to provide a benchmark in handling and performance. The Exige 360 Cup bespoke styling signals an evolution in design, with an option of four colours (Metallic White, Metallic Grey, Metallic Black and Metallic Silver) and stealth matt black roof, front access panel and louvered tailgate. This design is a limited edition run of 50 vehicles and each of these special Exige 360 Cup cars will receive a numbered Lotus Motorsport build plate.

2016 Lotus Exige 360 Cup Wallpaper quality
- image 640414

This new model boasts an increase in power of 10 PS with freer flowing induction and a sports exhaust system, which combined with a low vehicle weight of 1130 kg gives an incredibly pure driving experience on road and track. The powertrain updates also give the Exige 360 Cup a sportier soundtrack to enhance the driving experience.

Jean-Marc Gales, CEO of Group Lotus plc, commented: “The V6 Cup was a favourite amongst many knowledgeable customers with its incredible track p
erformance and distinctive design. I am excited about the introduction of the new 360 Cup which moves the game forward with striking new design features and
performance upgrades that offer phenomenal ability on road and track.”

The Exige 360 Cup uses the track proven aero package from the Exige V6 Cup with an aerodynamically optimised front splitter, rear diffuser and wing. Together with the flat underside these aerodynamic aids offer 42 kg of downforce at 100 mph (160 km/h). The chassis on the Exige 360 Cup is a Lotus designed stiff and lightweight bonded aluminium chassis with double wishbone suspension all round. The car is fitted with track focused 2-way adjustable suspension and a 4-dynamic mode (drive, sport, race and off) system, including launch control.

New features for the Exige 360 Cup include a bespoke lightweight front access panel, new lightweight rear tailgate and louvered panel. The Exige 360 Cup has a distinctive design, updated grooved brake discs for improved performance, Motorsport Red wheels, embroidered seats and dash panel.

2016 Lotus Exige 360 Cup
- image 640415

The options available for the Exige 360 Cup include a new red Alcantara interior, adjustable anti-roll bars, Öhlins race dampers, fire extinguisher and electric
al cut-off, FIA carbon seats, air conditioning and removable steering wheel. The Exige 360 Cup is on sale now through the Lotus dealer network with prices starting at £62,995 (MSRP) including 20% tax.

As with all Lotus Motorsport Cup models the Exige 360 Cup is eligible for Lotus Cup race series.

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